Listen, it happens to the best of us—one day you wake-up feeling lost, confused and uncertain about your life. Next thing you know, you’re emotionally stuck in your own head: “Do I really have what it takes to start a new career in___________? Am I good enough?” “I’m too broke to think about ______.” What will______think about me starting ________ at _____years old?” What if I fail? I can go on and on about the self-defeating thoughts and emotions that stop you from turning your vision into reality, but I think you get the gist of where I’m going. Typically, five minutes after we think about our dreams, we kill the chance of them ever happening. Here’s why:
1. You’re consuming too much information – Recently, on a beautiful day in New York City, I was strolling down the street amazed by how many people were walking around like zombies staring straight into their cell phones. Then I went to a restaurant and watched people obviously sharing a meal with friends or colleagues, sitting at the table glaring at their cellphones. Seriously, how can you get focused on your turning your ideas into action if you’re so consumed with finding out what your 300+ followers are doing 5-10 times a day?
The information overload fix: Unplug at least once a week. Remove the app from your cellphone. Limit the number of times you check email to 3 times a day. Most importantly, create before you consume–one of the best pieces of advice I ever received from Marie Forleo, my BFF in my head.
2. You’re waiting for perfection – I’ve had my fair share of struggles with perfection. But after getting out of my own way here’s what I know for sure, the day I said to myself “whatever, I’m just going to start this blog and see what happens,” is the day the universe opened the door of opportunities for me. I started writing about travel, simply because I loved it. With each post, I felt a little more confident in my writing. Even after months of no one liking my page or commenting on my posts. I continued to write because I loved looking back over my experiences, like wow, I really did that! Then, the comments started rolling in and I realized I was inspiring and helping people. Next thing you know, I used my confident swag and approached other bloggers about writing guest blog posts on their sites. Of course, the rest is history–I’m a published author in both print and digital publications such as Black Enterprise Magazine, Diversity Woman Magazine, and TravelistaTV.
“The perfection fix:” 1. Just create something and put it out there. You can learn and improve your skills as you go along.How do you expect for people to learn about your gifts if you don’t share your super powers? 2.When you commit to exploring, you can discover hidden talents. 3. Challenge yourself to execute on an idea at least once a week. 4. Find an accountability partner.
3. You’re comparing your journey to “______.” Whether it’s sizing yourself up to old classmates, neighbors or co-workers, at one point, we’ve all compared ourselves to someone else. The key is to not get caught up in looking back, up or around at your so called competition–look within. We all have our own race to run and the energy you’re putting into obsessing over others is keeping you away from your greatness.
“The comparison fix:” First, respect your process but own your B.S. Look at your daily habits. Are you working on your goals every day or spending your time fixated on the lives of others on social media? Some of these “social media” stars got y’all thinking they were born a #CEO #GirlBoss, #BrandCoach—the list goes on. But you never really know what people are going through behind the lens of Facebook, Instagram or even YouTube. Now, I don’t want to make it seem like I’m blaming social media for everything under the sun, because Lord knows it’s a necessary for my business, but my point is “You are your only competition. Put your blinders on and run your own race.
Secondly, have you stepped up your game from last year? Be real with yourself. What action have you taken towards your dreams?
4. Your goals are too lofty or unrealistic –When our goals are too lofty, we procrastinate and eventually quit the process. So here’s the thing, typically our brains work best when we process bite-sized chunks of information.
“The lofty goals fix:” 1. Break your goals down into manageable chunks. 2. Create quarterly (3-month intervals) SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely) goals. 3.Instead of focusing on the results, celebrate small wins or slight improvements.”
5. You’re burned out — Newsflash: burnout is real. It can make you feel like you can’t read, write or figure out what’s 1+1. When you’re feeling stuck, you simply need to walk away and take a break. When was the last time you took some time out to celebrate your short-term wins? When was the last time you went out and had fun or planned to have a little too much to drink (c’mon, drink responsibly, people)?
“The Burnout Fix” – Whether it’s leaving your desk at work for 15-3o minutes to take a walk around the building or scheduling a “Hangover” date with your significant other or friends, self-care is extremely important—stop thinking about it and make it happen. Oh and because I love a good “hangover” story—share the deets with me afterwards.
Have you ever struggled with any of these things? Share your “fix” by leaving a comment below.